Trek to Everest Base Camp for outstanding views of the world’s tallest mountain. Everest is the undisputed star of this trek, but there are plenty of other memorable sights on the way. You will cross majestic rivers, visit Sherpa villages and Buddhist monasteries and have time to relax and take in the peaceful beauty of the Himalayas.
Our Everest Base Camp trek is the most challenging trek we offer. As far as experiences go, there is nothing like Everest trekking, it will take your breath away, in more ways than one! You will have 14 days of actual trekking, reaching altitudes of 5,550m. It’s graded as ‘moderate to strenuous’, which means that you will need a good level of physical fitness.
Duration: 18 days
Trekking days: 14
Max Elevation: 5550m/18209ft
Grade of trek: Moderate to Strenuous
Dates: Flexible throughout the trekking season (Sept-May). Guaranteed start dates on 1st Friday of each month.
Arrival day: Friday
Return day: Monday
Eligibility: Good level of physical fitness is required. This is an intense trek at high altitude.
- Feeling on top of the world as you trek through the spectacular Himalayan scenery
- Wandering the bustling streets of Kathmandu, with its many beautiful religious and cultural monuments
- Visiting unspoilt Sherpa villages and colourful hillside monasteries
- Enjoying the stunning mountain views on the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla
After exploring the vibrant streets of Kathmandu, you will fly to Lukla to begin a 14 day trek up to Kalapahar and the Everest Base Camp. Travelling through lush forest, you will head up the Dudh Kosi river valley and the Khumbu valley, eventually arriving at the Khumbu glacier.
Once you reach Everest Base Camp, you will be given the option to climb higher to Pumori ridge for the best views of the valley. After a day and two nights at the Base Camp, you will start your descent back through the valleys towards Lukla.
The scenery during an Everest Base Camp trek is truly unforgettable – not just because you will see the legendary Himalayas, but also because you will see unspoilt villages and beautiful forests along the way. If you are looking to immerse yourself in the great outdoors – it doesn’t get better than Everest trekking.
Check out our full itinerary for a breakdown of the route and more details.
- Whilst in Kathmandu (4 nights) you will stay in a central hotel on a bed and breakfast basis
- Along the trekking route you will stay in comfortable and good quality lodges, expect to share a bathroom with other trekkers (13 nights)
In our experience, trekkers enjoy the flexibility of being able to choose their meals. Therefore, we exclude most meals from the cost of the trek so that you can eat according to your budget and preferred taste. A budget of £13 per day should be ample.
Airport: Kathmandu Airport (KTM)
Arrival day: Friday (other arrival days are possible)
Transfers: You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel accommodation for orientation.
Departure day: Monday – you will be taken back to Kathmandu Airport.
Basant has been our representative since we started and has over a decade of experience in dealing with our trekkers. He is based in Kathmandu and runs all of the orientation sessions before handing you over to one of the highly experienced guides who will be leading your trek.
- Access to your own personal ‘My Oyster’ account – our online portal where you can find out much more about the program and manage your booking
- Dedicated contact time with an experienced destination manager to discuss the project, answer any of your questions and for us to find out more about you
- Help and advice from our UK office before arrival and whilst you are away
- In-country support
- Pre-departure information covering medical, safety and project advice
- Financial protection: ATOL (if we book your flights); IPP (if we don’t book your flights)
- Thorough orientation on arrival
- Accommodation (see the ‘accommodation’ section above for details)
- Advice on visa requirements
- Oyster plants a tree in Africa with TreeAid to help offset your carbon emissions
- Airport transfers and all necessary transport during your trip (including return flight from Kathmandu to Lukla)
- 4 nights accommodation with breakfast in Kathmandu on twin-sharing basis
- 1 half-day guided sightseeing of the world heritage sites in Kathmandu, including transport and entrance fees
- Trek with well-respected local firm with experienced guides and full insurance
- Porters during the trek (weight max. 15 kg per client)
- National park fee
- Oyster Trekking kit bag for each group member
- Flights – as an ATOL bonded company, Oyster can book flights for you
- You need a valid passport that meets the requirements of the country you will be travelling to
- Insurance (covering your time with Oyster and any planned independent travel)
- Any costs associated with changing your return flight date if you need to
- Independent travel costs
- Home country travel costs
- Spending money for additional trips, food and entertainment
- All meals during trek
- Lunches and dinners in Kathmandu
- Nepal Visa fee (approx US$40 for up to 30 days)
- Gratuities for staff
The trip starts in historic Kathmandu, with its ancient temples and bustling streets. After a day of acclimatising and sight-seeing, you’ll head to the mountain-side airport at Lukla for the start of the trek, flying over dramatic scenery on the way.
The trek lasts for 14 days and takes in some of the most impressive sights in the Himalaya region. We begin in the scenic Dudh Kosi valley, passing over into the Khumbu valley before finally climbing the Khumbu glacier for fantastic views of the Himalayas.
Day 1 – Arrival in Kathmandu
You will be met at the airport and taken to your hotel. Our representative will get you settled in and give you a basic introduction to the local area. O/N Hotel Kathmandu
Day 2 – Orientation and briefing
After breakfast, you will have a full briefing to prepare you for the trek, including kit, conditions, health and safety. In the afternoon, you’ll be taken for a guided tour of this fascinating medieval city. O/N Hotel Kathmandu
Day 3: Fly to Lukla, trek to Phakding (2610m)
Fly over dramatic landscapes to Lukla, situated high among the peaks. Our trek begins with a descent to Chaplung to allow you to adapt gradually to the sudden change in altitude. After lunch, enjoy an easy trek to Phakding up the beautiful Dudh Kosi river valley, passing huge carved stones and prayer wheel shrines. O/N Lodge in Phakding
Day 4: Trek to Namche Bazaar (3440m)
The morning’s trek follows the river through pine and rhododendron forests to reach Monzo at the entrance to Everest National Park. Then cross the river to reach Jorsale for lunch. After a gentle start, the trek gets steeper, crossing an impressive bridge high above the Imja Khola river and then up the ridge opposite. Halfway up, you should be able to see your first view of Everest. Eventually you’ll reach Namche Bazaar, the Khumbu district capital, built within a natural amphitheater setting surrounded by peaks. O/N Lodge in Namche
Day 5: Rest day at Namche (3440m) Lunch at Namche
Explore the local area, hiking up to Khumjung village with its school founded by Sir Edmund Hilary, visiting the local market and the museum. There is plenty to see and do – or you can just relax. O/N Lodge in Namche
Day 6: Namche-Khumjung, option via Thame (3820m) Lunch at Thame
Today, you can either take the short direct route up to Khumjung, or the more strenuous option up the beautiful Nangpo river, through undisturbed little villages, to the lovely village of Thame. After lunch, you can visit the monastery (gompa) perched on the hillside above. This is one of the best active gompas in Khumbu. It has beautiful paintings and is approached by a path winding along the longest carved Mani wall in Nepal. You then head for a ridge to see the stunning view north towards the Nangpa La over into Tibet, before trekking on to reach Kunde and Khumjung (3780m). These two Sherpa villages are less touristy than Namche and are dominated by the beautiful peaks of Ama Dablam. O/N Lodge in Khumjung
Day 7: Khumjung – Deboche (3820m) Lunch at Phungithanka
Make your way down through the forested hillside to the Imja Khola river (3245m), taking a break at the tea houses of Pungo Tenga with its intricate water-driven prayer wheels. Then you’ll have a steady climb, winding up through the rich forest beyond and looking out for groups of Himalayan tahr grazing on the slopes above our heads. You then reach the famous monastery of Thyangboche (3930m) for lunch. This is the most important gompa in the Sherpa region, sadly burned down in 1989, but now almost completely restored. There are only a few lodges here, since the site is essentially a sacred one. They get crowded at night, so after visiting the monastery and enjoying the wonderful views you will head on for another 20 minutes to a peaceful, comfortable lodge at Deboche in a garden set amongst the beautiful forests. O/N Lodge in Deboche
Day 8: Deboche – Dingboche (4410m) Lunch at Somare
This is a short, easy morning: you continue down to re-cross the Imja Khola at a dramatic bridged gorge, before continuing the short route to Pangboche (3900m). Here you can visit the gompa above the village. This was built by the Sherpa people when they first moved to the area from their native Tibet. It is a more private and intimate gompa than Thyangboche and you will need to respect this during your visit. After lunch, continue up to the top of the Khumbu valley through beautiful mossy forests. The destination is Dingboche, a village on the Imja Khola. O/N Lodge in Dingboche
Day 9: Dingboche-Lobuche (4910m) Lunch at Thugla
Today, start your final approach to the base camp area. You have a relatively easy morning, rounding the ridge above Dingboche and proceeding along wide grassy slopes all the way to Thugla (4595m) for lunch. Then you will climb steeply up the terminal moraine at the snout of the Khumbu glacier until you come out alongside it at a ridge lined by hundreds of cairns dedicated to the many Sherpas who have lost their lives in attempts on Everest and other peaks. Continue alongside the glacier, finally reaching Lobuche, our lodge stop. O/N Lodge in Lobuche
Day 10: Lobuche-Gorak Shep, Kalapathar (5550m) Everest viewpoint: (5140m) Lunch at Gorakshep
Start early, trekking alongside the Khumbu glacier up to Gorak Shep (5180m) at the base of Kalapathar. The route crosses an open sand flat before climbing upwards on a well-trodden path which becomes rockier and decked with colourful prayer flags towards the top. At this altitude you might be feeling pretty breathless, so you will adopt a slow and steady pace with plenty of short breaks. It is well worth the effort. At the top (5555m), a stunning 360o panorama awaits: Pumori directly in front of us, Changtse in Tibet, and across the wide space of the Khumbu glacier, the vast black pyramid of Everest itself, down as far as the South Col which joins it to Lhotse. This is the ideal time to be here; early enough ensure clear views, but late enough to allow the sun to reach in front of the peaks. Taking as long as you want at the top, you then descend to Gorak Shep for lunch and a relaxing afternoon. Clear sunsets in the Himalaya are rarer than clear dawns, but if there is even a hint of one, you should take the chance and go up Kalapathar again for a magical experience. O/N Lodge in Gorakshep
Day 11: Options to Everest Base Camp (5364m) or Pumori Ridge Everest viewpoint (5140m)
You have a choice of destinations today: base camp itself (historically significant, but with poorer views) or, alternatively, an exceptional viewpoint on the slopes of Pumori. The Pumori option involves taking the route to Pumori base camp and then scrambling the rocky path above to the viewpoint. From here you can see right into the Western Cwm with the Lhotse face behind; the entire classic ’53 route to the summit. It was right here that Edmund Hillary and Eric Shipton first discovered that there was a climbable route from this side. You will only take the Pumori viewpoint option if participants have adjusted well to the altitude. Dependent on the group size, both options may be possible. We all return for our second night at Gorak Shep. O/N Lodge in EBC
Day 12: Gorak Shep – Dingboche (4410m) Lunch at Thugla
The return to Namche takes only 3 days, as you are now well acclimatized. Follow the side of the glacier back to its snout at Thugla for lunch. Then continue to Dingboche. O/N Lodge in Dingboche
Day 13: Dingboche – Deboche (3820m) Lunch at Pangboche
Rejoin the Imja Khola river, following the north bank through beautiful forests to Pangboche. After lunch, cross back over the gorge for a gentle trek to Deboche. O/N Lodge in Deboche
Day 14: Deboche – Namche Bazaar (3440m) Lunch at Kyangjuma
Today, you’ll have another chance to visit Thayangboche before descending to cross the river again. After lunch in Kyangjuma you’ll continue to Namche. O/N Hotel in Namche
Day 15: Namche – Lukla (2840m) Lunch at Phakding
Start with a steep descent down the ridge again to the suspension bridge and follow the river back down to Phakding for lunch. In the afternoon, continue down to Lukla. This will be your last night with your trekking crew (except your guide). The crew will join you for a farewell ceremony with Nepali song and dance. O/N Lodge in Lukla
Day 16: Fly Lukla – Kathmandu
Take the spectacular flight past the mountains back to Kathmandu. After checking back into your hotel, you can relax or wander the streets before dinner in a local restaurant. O/N Hotel in Kathmandu
Day 17: Day at leisure
You have the whole day to yourself to relax at hotel or explore Kathmandu, shopping etc. O/N at Hotel in Kathmandu
Day 18: Holiday extension or final departure
You will be transferred back to the airport for your final departure flight, unless you are extending your holiday.
Arrivals in Kathmandu on the first Friday of each month during the trekking season (September – May each year).
We are completely flexible with start dates so feel free to request any other date if you cannot make the first Friday of the month.
As with all of Oyster’s trips, you can be confident of safe, well-organised travel and a great personal service from Jon, the Destination Manager for Nepal.
He will be happy to chat through your needs and find the right Nepal trek for you.
Our prices are extremely competitive, due to the fact that we have direct and longstanding links with our trekking partners and are able to keep prices down without compromising on quality. We really don’t think you can find better Nepal treks for the price.
Oyster is not able to advise you on which insurance policy you should get. What we can say is that you should ensure that you have a comprehensive policy that covers you for trekking at altitudes up to 5,500m. You should also make sure that your policy covers you for emergency helicopter evacuation.
We act as ‘Introducer’ for a policy with Global Travel Insurance.
Nepal has two main seasons. The dry season is between October and May. The wet season is between June and September. It can get very hot in Nepal, even during the winter months it can get to 20oC during the day, but very cold at night.
We would recommend allowing £13 per day for food. Including social life costs, you will probably spend about £20 per day in total.
You can withdraw Nepali rupees in Kathmandu from one of the many ATMs in the city. You will need cash for the trek to pay for your food each day.
The Nepal Visa fee is approx US$40 for up to 30 days. This will be granted on arrival in Nepal.
You can travel solo on our treks although groups of friends are very welcome. The more people in your group, the cheaper it will be per person.
You should visit your doctor or travel nurse to find out what vaccinations you will need. Your routine vaccinations will need to be up to date, Hepatitis A and Typhoid are likely and Hepatitis B, Yellow fever, malaria and Rabies are a possiblity. You should follow your doctors advice.
There is a health clinic run by western doctors located in Kathmandu. They deal with most health concerns of our participants. If you have any medical issues whilst on a trek, you will be offered First Aid from our trained guides. There are medical clinics along the trekking route and, for anything serious, your travel insurance should cover you for helicopter evacuation to Kathmandu.
Trekking is an adventure sport and carries risks with it. We have taken every precaution to make sure that you will be suitable for the trek and that you will be briefed thoroughly on the risks and how to manage them. Our guides are experts and able to deal with any safety issues. Nepal is generally regarded as safe. Don’t believe all you hear from tourists and do listen to the advice of Oyster and Basant. Above all use your common sense i.e. if you see a crowd forming don’t go and see what it is all about – leave the area.
During the Kathmandu portions, you will be in the heart of the tourist district.
Whilst on the treks themselves, Kathmandu will be a flight away from the trek start point.
You will stay in simple but comfortable hotels in Kathmandu, as well as the best available lodges en route.
Dal Bhat – this is a lentil based curry (not very spicy) served with rice. You will learn to love this as most people have this for breakfast and dinner each day. In Kathmandu, you can buy pretty much any food that you like. There are pizza places, bakeries, Chinese, Thai and Indian restaurants… the list goes on! Nepal is one of only a few countries in the world that does not have a McDonalds!
WiFi is available in Kathmandu before and after your trek by visiting one of the many internet cafes. Whilst on the trek, you should not expect to get access to the internet.
Mobile reception is good in the Kathmandu Valley. Don’t expect to get mobile reception when trekking. Our guides carry emergency satellite phones which are only used in case of emergency.
Nepal is just under 6 hours ahead of GMT (GMT +5:45).
An international adapter is recommended in Nepal. A mixture of 3 round pin (small or large) and 2 round pin sockets exist.
Many trekkers use this as an opportunity to explore the World Heritage Sites in Kathmandu and to buy gifts to take home. If you extend your trip and have more free time, there are lots of things that you can do. From rafting, to safari to heading to Pokhara, we can advise and help you to book these.
Generally, you will have at least one or two days in Kathmandu.
Supervision will be fairly intensive during the first few days, when you will receive a thorough induction and trek briefing. During the trek itself, you will be supervised by a guide and porters whilst walking.
Staff at Oyster’s head office and in-country will be responsible for your safety and welfare while you are on the trek. This will start from the moment you are picked up from the airport until the time you are dropped back there. Before and after these times, you will be outside Oyster’s responsibility and should make sure that you act safely and avoid risk. This is also true if you choose to go sight-seeing during your time off. We will give you plenty of guidance and advice about this.